JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Family and friends gathered Sunday to hold a celebration of life event for Deshawn Johnson. The 25-year-old husband and father of two lost his life when a tree branch fell on his car along Roosevelt Boulevard in the Ortega area during Tropical Storm Elsa.
More than a hundred people showed up to remember the man described as an extrovert, kind, and funny. They wore blue, which was the color of Johnson's car. The car enthusiast tragically lost his life in his prized car.
“We’re coming together to celebrate the life of Deshawn ‘Sub Zero’ Johnson," said Montae Williams, a close friend.
“He was a member of my car club. He was a great friend, a family member, a loving husband, a father, and we just want to pay our respects because it was so hard losing him so tragically so out of the blue," said Darryl Walker, regional president of Flawless Empire Auto Club.
Johnson felt at home with the group of car lovers at Flawless Empire Auto Club. He loved cars, and he loved his country, even more, serving at the Naval Air Station in Jacksonville.
“He loved this country," Walker said. "He protected this country. He was a great military man, and we just want the world to see that.”
Several car clubs, including Johnson's club, came out to remember a young life gone too soon.
“He loved to make people smile," Williams said. "You could have the worst day you could think of, but seeing him, he’s going to cheer you up.”
Johnson's wife spoke to First Coast News off-camera and said a funeral will be held in Hampton, Virginia where he's from.
“He’ll be truly missed leaving this earth at 25 years old. Life is too short," Williams said. "You just have to live every day like it’s your last.”
“He was a really great guy. Enjoy every moment. Love hard, live hard, laugh often," Walker said. "It just taught us to let small things go.”
Johnson's friends and family let a sea of balloons go at the celebration of life as they hold on to the memories of a man who put a smile on the faces of so many people.